13 MAR 2023

Pay TV continues to decline both in Western and Eastern Europe

Western European pay TV revenues will decline by nearly US$5 billion between 2022 and 2028 to US$22 billion, while in Eastern Europe the number of pay TV subscribers will fall by 8 million, according to Digital TV Research.


Western European pay TV revenues will decline by nearly US$5 billion between 2022 and 2028 to US$22 billion, down by 18%, Digital TV Research revealed in its latest report. According to the research group, the pay TV subscriber count will drop by 7%, so revenues will fall faster, revealing lower TV ARPUs and less emphasis on TV from the operators.

Regarding territories, the “Western Europe Pay TV Forecasts” report reveals that pay TV revenues will fall in every country in the region except Malta between 2022 and 2028. The UK and France, for example, will each decline by US$1 billion.

“IPTV revenues overtook digital cable in 2022. IPTV will surpass satellite TV in 2025 to become the most lucrative platform,”  noted Simon Murray, Principal Analyst at Digital TV Research, which also said that satellite TV will lose US$3 billion between 2022 and 2028, mainly because satellite TV subscribers are converting to platforms that offer broadband connections.


Meanwhile, in Eastern Europe, the number of pay TV subscribers will decline by 8 million from 81 million in the peak year of 2018 to 73 million in 2028. However, 2018 included 17 million analog cable subscribers, which will drop to zero by 2027. Therefore, the number of digital pay TV subscribers will climb by 8 million between 2018 and 2028.

“Even without the crisis in Ukraine, tough times continue in Eastern Europe, with poor job prospects forcing many to seek work abroad. This migration married with low birth rates mean that the number of pay TV subscribers will fall in 18 of the 22 countries covered between 2022 and 2028,”  Simon Murray commented.

In its “Eastern Europe Pay TV Forecasts” report, Digital TV Research also revealed that Russia will lose 4 million pay TV subscribers between 2022 and 2028 partly as sanctions worsen the economic situation and also due to some analog cable homes converting to free-to-air DTT.


At the same time, OTT television episode and movie revenues for 22 Eastern European countries will reach US$5.4 billion in 2028, nearly double from US$2.8 billion in 2022. Poland will remain the OTT revenue winner, doubling its total between 2022 and 2028 to US$2 billion. Russia’s growth will be muted given the sanctions. Together, Poland and Russia will account for 61% of the region’s 2028 total revenues.

SVOD revenues will reach US$3.3 billion by 2028, up from US$1.7 billion in 2022. Due to the slowdown in Russia, Poland will become the SVOD market leader by some distance – the only country to generate more than US$1 billion by 2028. “AVOD revenues will grow faster than SVOD. Russia’s AVOD revenues will stay just ahead of Poland,”  Simon Murray assured.

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